Best Value For Money Cars In India 2016

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Looking to buy a car? When it comes to buying a car, we want the best value for the money that a car can offer. Read on to find out which cars in India are the best value for money at the moment.

Let us break this study based on the segment.

Small Cars & Hatchback

Under this category, we have some very good and best-selling cars in India right now. The Tata Nano, Tata Nano GenX, Maruti Alto 800, Hyundai Eon and Renault Kwid fall under the small car segment, which is priced between Rs. 2 lakhs to Rs. 6 lakhs.

The Renault Kwid tops the chart with its unique features like the touch-screen infotainment system and bold and muscular design which is inspired from an SUV. Also, it's priced closely compared to its competitor.

Overall Small Cars Rating

  • Tata Nano - 7.5/10
  • Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 8/10
  • Hyundai Eon - 7.5/10
  • Renault Kwid - 8.5/10

Under the small hatchback segment, Maruti Suzuki Alto K10, Hyundai i10, Maruti Suzuki Celerio, and Tata Tiago make up the list. These are picked based on best-selling and exciting new models in India.

This segment has some fierce competition and each of these cars have some of the best features. Take the Alto K10, Maruti's best selling car which has sold close to 30 lakh units. It is the most trusted brand and it enjoys a the best value for money tag.

The Tata Tiago is the new entrant and it has wowed with the introductory pricing and has the best music system by Harman and the infotainment system includes navigation system as well, which the Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 lacks. Tata Tiago does not come with the automatic gearbox, this could be a dampener.

As for the Maruti Suzuki Celerio, this has been a great entry for the manufacturer, as this really brought in the automatic variant breakthrough in India with lower cost. The car is not of the modern design and bit conventional to look at, however, the ergonomics are engineered well by Maruti.

For the verdict, the pricier Maruti Celerio is loaded with features like dual airbags, speed sensing door locks, front and rear power windows, and a lot more minor details.

The Tata Tiago scores better with the pricing and features like navigation system, best audio system compared to the other two cars. Most of all it comes with ABS with EBD including corner stability control and is much more powerful compared to the rest for a lower pricing than the Celerio.

Overall Small Hatchback Rating

  • Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 - 7.5/10
  • Hyundai i10 - 7.5/10
  • Maruti Suzuki Celerio - 8/10
  • Tata Tiago - 8.5/10

Under the specifications of a hatchback, here the list which includes Hyundai Grand i10, Maruti Suzuki Swift, Ford Figo, Mahindra KUV100, Honda Brio and Fiat Punto EVO.

If you are looking beyond the small cars, the hatchbacks are in the next level and each of the models packs a punch be it features or the performance.

Maruti Suzuki Swift has been one of their mainstays for the number of sales it contributes to its portfolio, it is powerful and feature rich, most of the features are similar to the other rivals, however, the Swift gets the backing of the post sales services and spares.

The Hyundai Grand i10 is a good looking car, it's well finished and the straight lines of the car makes it look like a hatchback rather than a small car. The colour options are great and better compared to the Swift options. However, on the performance front both the cars are closest in all specifications.

Looking at the Ford Figo, one can tell the build quality, which is incredible, they have provided with world class features like power ORVM which folds on it own, and the MyFordDock which helps you dock your mobile phone, MP3 player or satellite navigation system and this integrates into the car's entertainment system.

Honda Brio is from the Japanese manufacturer and you can vouch for the quality of engineering. The car though suffers from cabin space and not the very roomier at the rear seats, a 5-seater is very much a challenge. As for the features, this car comes with an automatic gearbox, which separates itself from the competitors. A lot of woman drivers would love this car for its drivability and ease of use.

Moving to our next contender, the Mahindra KU100, this is more of an SUV rather than a hatchback, so if you are looking to buy a hatchback, but want own an SUV, the Mahindra KUV100 will answer your question. A great package altogether by Mahindra, better ground clearance, great storage spaces, unique features like 6-seater option - even though it hardly makes a difference - power and eco mode for better performance, DRLs, and hybrid technology for better performance.

Last but not the least is the Fiat Punto EVO, an awesome and solid build, you can throw the car and it will be stable in every aspect. Has the best of ergonomics, you don't feel the drive on your long journeys and interiors are world class. The performance of the Fiat Punto EVO is subtle but a great when you want to push the car to the maximum. It is a driver's delight when it comes to ride and drivability.

Moving on to the verdict, each of these hatchbacks competes closely and there isn't a clear winner, however, looking at the overall package and the pricing front. The Fiat Punto EVO and the Honda Brio are expensive cars, Ford Figo and Hyundai are priced equally, and that leaves us with Mahindra KUV100 and Maruti Suzuki Swift, the KUV100 cheaper by approximately 20,000.

Mahindra KUV100 is the best value for money car if you are looking to forgo the looks of the car, the Maruti Swift is a good looking car and good value for money as it comes with the backing of post sales service and cheaper spares. If you are looking to experiment and want those SUV features, Mahindra KUV100 is indeed the best value for money car.

Overall Hatchback Rating

  • Hyundai Grand i10 - 7.5/10
  • Maruti Suzuki Swift - 8/10
  • Ford Figo - 7.5/10
  • Honda Brio - 7.5/10
  • Fiat Punto EVO - 7.5/10
  • Mahindra KUV100 8.5/10

Premium Hatchback

In the recent past, the premium hatchback segment has created quite a good excitement in the industry, every manufacturer has launched a car under this segment so that they don't lose out on the competition.

In this list, we have Maruti Suzuki Baleno, Hyundai Elite i20, and Honda Jazz. The Suzuki Baleno is the current flavour in this segment, however, the Hyundai Elite i20 is best when it comes to performance and features.

The Baleno is the rounded design philosophy and the bulge around it are not the ravishing best, but relevant to the segment it belongs. As for the Hyundai Elite i20, the design of the Fluidic design of Hyundai and it is well finished, the headlamps to the taillamps look amazing. The Honda Jazz is best looking among the three with its sharp design and wing design philosophy of Honda.

As for the features, both the Suzuki Baleno and Hyundai Elite i20 are neck in neck with the list of features be it safety, entertainment or even the interiors. As for the Honda Jazz, this too comes all the features as the other, however, the top variant of the automatic comes with paddle shifters, this is unique to the Honda Jazz.

Coming to the verdict, when we compare the design, features, performance, post sales service and the pricing, the Baleno is the best value for money car.

Overall Premium Hatchback Rating

  • Hyundai Elite i20 - 7.5/10
  • Honda Jazz - 7.5/10
  • Maruti Suzuki Baleno - 8/10

There will be an update to this read which will include the sedan, MPV and SUV categories.

Story first published: Wednesday, April 13, 2016, 18:36 [IST]
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